Pics of the week: croptastic

In order to explain today’s pics, I need to bore you guys for a hot second. Bear with me. When you upload a profile picture onto Okcupid, you’re prompted to crop it into a smaller thumbnail version. The small version is what appears in searches and on your profile’s homepage, so logically if your photo was taken from far away or includes other people, you can choose to zoom in on just your face so people can actually see you when browsing.  Well apparently the cool thing to do these days (and I wouldn’t know because hi, rapidly approaching 30 over here)…

youths

via: http://rednkhakirants.tumblr.com/page/3

…is to crop your profile pic like a complete asshole.

Allow me to introduce the following samples into evidence. Here’s bachelor # 1’s thumbnail picture, which appeared on my homepage:

focusin1

Admittedly harmless, but gee, I wonder who that ear and partial cheek belongs to? Probably someone super interesting. I mean, how coy. How mysterious. Let’s have a looky-loo at the rest of him, shall we? Clicking on his photo reveals…

focusin1big

A reasonably cute guy! Except he immediately kills my vibe with a newsies cap, and I have a strict no fedoras/newsies caps/pork pie hats rule. Seriously, if you’re wearing one of those, you’d better be on your way to sell some papes, or organize a child labor union with Christian Bale:

On to our next reveal, bachelor #2’s thumbnail pic:

focusin2

I mean…

karen

via: http://rednkhakirants.tumblr.com/page/2

Let’s find out, shall we?

focusin2big

What did we win? Oh just a creeper in a hoodie with gross looking cuticles. Swoon. How many failed attempts do we think it took this guy before he got the positioning juuuust right? 15? 20?

This is unrelated, but it must be noted that bachelor #2’s profile lists “going to the toilet” as one of his interests.

GrossedSNL_zps78c71cbb

via: http://s284.photobucket.com/user/Bigsteve87/media/Gifs/GrossedSNL_zps78c71cbb.gif.html

Obviously I’ve saved the best (i.e. most senseless) for last:

bb1

WHAT IS WITH MEN FLASHING THEIR BELLY BUTTONS?? Please, adult males, no belly buttons on online dating sites. Not now, not ever. I beg you.

Welp, we may as well take a look at the whole package, as it were. Behold, bachelor #3:

bb2

A classic ill-advised shirtless selfie. Some things never change.

Bottom line: women don’t need you to show us that you’re pseudo-creative, unique, ironic, or mysterious, or whatever else you think you are by cropping your picture in this senseless manner. If you need to express yourself creatively please, get an Instagram account and bore your friends with your filter choices like a normal person.

Also, I’m sure you think your weird thumbnail will catch our attention, and clearly these have caught mine, but the only thing I feel is annoyance at having to work to figure out what you look like. I just. want. to see. your. face. And if I can’t, for me it’s an automatic…

thumbs down

via: http://giphy.com/search/thumbs-down

 

Tough Life lessons with S (and Blerta)

I’ve learned a few important lessons since my first post back in January:

1. Beware of Reddit.

2. Don’t forget to warn your mom about potentially upsetting content. For instance, when your co-blogger posts a particularly offensive and gross message for Message Monday, it’s good to give your mother a heads up, or she may call you, freak out, tell you she lost sleep thinking about you and your co-bloggers coming in contact with dudes like that, and ask if you want to come home (that is my mom’s go to line whenever something upsetting happens: “DO YOU WANT TO COME HOME???” To be fair, home is a 20 minute drive from my apartment so it’s not a totally ridiculous question. And real talk, sometimes yes, yes I do want to come home and lay on my parents’ couch and eat free food and watch free cable. So sue me. #almost29yearsold

bridesmaids-movie-quotes-74

3. Don’t trash a guy on your blog until you’re sure it’s over. Ahhh yes. This is an important one that I am learning in real time, literally as I write this. Please refer to this post where I introduced you all to a guy I’d been seeing named H, then proceeded to call him a “dickweed” for abruptly ending it with me and added a sassy little Kelly Kapoor gif to round out my rage. Don’t get my wrong, H acted like a jerk, and he totally deserved it. But now it’s time for me to eat crow/feel stupid and reveal to you, dear readers, that H reappeared a few weeks after that incident, apologized profusely for being a jerk, and after talking it out we started to casually, slowly see each other again.

Before you get all, ‘what the hell, S, this guy sounded like an asshole,’ allow me to fully explain the situation. H is fairly recently divorced… the first divorced dude I’ve ever dated. He was pretty open/up front about the terrible shape he was in when his marriage first ended and that he only just re-entered the dating world, intent on taking things slowly. Now clearly when he pulled a ‘oh hey I’m sort of seeing someone else, JUST KIDDING that was a mistake please forgive me’, I could tell he miiiiiight not be the most stable table on the showroom floor in terms of dating readiness. But what can I say? I liked him. A lot. I thought we’d really hit it off. And I just knew if I didn’t (cautiously) give this dude who I really liked a second chance, I’d always wonder.

So I agreed to start seeing H again, very slowly and casually, and we did just that. Here’s what I liked about him:

  • He was really smart, but didn’t take himself too seriously. H had a graduate degree, was a college professor on top of his full time job, and had run a successful start up with his two friends right out of school. He was intelligent, creative, interesting, and successful, but he also loved bad TV and eagerly ranked the best diners in South Jersey with me. There was zero arrogance, which I’m all about (take notes, Mr. Mensa).
  • He was honest. Possibly bordering on too honest. H was totally up front about the divorce thing and the fact that he was still very much recovering.
  • He was fun, considerate, and (relatively) easy to make plans with. I say relatively because any one of my girlfriends would still beat him, even on their worst day, in the being proactive category, but to be fair we are an exceptionally bossy bunch. H remembered things I said I’d wanted to do or try when we made plans, cooked for me (although sadly there was no elaborate menu this time) and even though he lived in the suburbs, always offered to schlep into the city to see me.
  • The chemistry was there. From the beginning I felt like we had that intangible thing that I talked about in my post about the points system. We just clicked. Little to no awkwardness. Easy flowing conversation. Joking, teasing, banter. The same sense of humor. Chemistry.
  • The attraction was there. H was no model (neither am I, so thank God) but he was my particular brand of cute, which is a little nerdy (much like L has a self-professed “mediocrity fetish”, I have a “mildly schlubby guy next door with glasses” fetish. Mmmmm glasses.) If I had to describe him I would say if Jack Black and the guy from Rudy had a baby, and that baby grew up to be a 6 foot tall 33 year old nerd who wore glasses, that would be H.

So I was going out with H until two weeks ago, and having a great time. I was also (half-heartedly) talking with and going on a few dates with other guys. In hindsight, I think I was doing this more to try to keep things breezy:

H had been pretty clear about wanting to keep things casual, which at first I was totally kosher with, but I as time went on I could feel myself starting to really like him. After our last date a few weeks ago, I just knew. I knew I’d have to have the ‘are we exclusive talk’ with him, and I knew how it would go. So being the BREEZY woman that I am, I naturally wrote out a FULL SCRIPT of what I wanted to say (actually super necessary because my mind goes blank in situations like this), called H and blurted the entire thing out in 12 seconds. And it went down exactly as I predicted: H said that as much as he liked me and was having a great time, he just wasn’t ready for an exclusive relationship yet. And I knew that unless I cut things off completely at that point, I’d be too tempted to keep seeing him. So I told him we had to stop seeing each other and asked him explicitly not to call or text me. And then I basically hung up on him because I was flustered and about to cry.

have a lot of feelings

Real talk, I was pretty bummed, you guys. I liked H a lot, probably more than anyone I’ve met via online dating. I was having a lot of fun with him and I could see trying to make a go of it long term. And truthfully I was really surprised by how hard a call this was to make. I knew intellectually what I was “supposed” to do as a strong, independent woman with a reasonable amount of self worth. But I liked this guy so much and was having such a genuinely great time with him, it was not easy to let that go, especially as an almost 29 year old single girl. I was so so tempted to just keep seeing H casually, not rock the boat, and try to ease him into the idea of something more serious.

But while my romantic self was concocting all sorts of fantasies about how that would totally definitely 100% work, my pragmatic self was like listen, home girl, you’re smarter than that. You know what you want, and you know that H either doesn’t want that or isn’t ready for it, and if you compromise on this you will feel like shit about yourself. I felt like I had an inner sassy gay friend guiding me:

look at your life

Also, as L pointed out (she’s so wise) this thing between us would have still inevitably ended, but probably in a much more miserable, messy way somewhere down the line. Ugh. Being a mature adult is the worst, isn’t it?

So now that it’s really over between me and H, I can officially go to town, tell you all some really embarrassing shit about him, and pull out as many sassy gifs as my heart desires, but of course now I actually have no interest in doing any of that. Damn it. It’s helping to remind myself that H was far from perfect. His apartment was a pigsty. He also owned and once wore in public, in my presence, with a straight face, a Google glass.

google-glass1

I mean.

Speaking of things H wore, perhaps revealing one little embarrassing detail about him to the internet will cheer me up. And never fear, I know just the thing to share with the class. H suffered from sleep apnea, so to help him breathe at night he had to wear something really…. unique to bed:

cpap

That super attractive piece of equipment is called a CPAP machine, and it’s something that I unfortunately became all too familiar with over this past summer. Fun fact: it not only makes the wearer look like Bane from Batman, but also sound like him, too. Between that and the Google glass, I did sometimes feel like I was dating a legitimate cyborg.

bane

Confession: when I wrote the bulk of this post last week I was going to end it by sharing this clip from Girls:

and telling you all that this scene is exactly what I do when my love life is not working out as planned. Basically: feel sad—> wallow in my sadness—> listen to some embarrassingly dramatic melancholy tunes—> get tired of being sad and dance it the eff out to some Robyn.

I was going to end with that. Until Tina Fey hosted SNL last weekend and bitch slapped me out of my walking Zoloft cloud trance.

I mean seriously, the whole thing is hysterical, and so true, but when they parody that exact scene at 2:35, I DIE. Once again, Tina wins at life. #Blerta

I’m doing my best to try to forget about H. I had a lot of fun with him, so I don’t regret giving him another chance for one second, but it’s time to move on. This will undoubtedly involve a lot of fall TV and white wine spritzers. And one October goal of mine, BESIDES blogging more, is to get back in the OKC saddle again. If Mr. Mensa would ever stop taking IQ tests and get his act together (he is STILL. MESSAGING ME. wtf) I would honor our survey results and start with him. Until then, bring on Season 2 of Nashville!

Have any of you lovely readers ended it with someone you really liked because you wanted different things, or because of bad timing? Leave a comment and tell me about it. Maybe we can form a ‘people who make grown up dating decisions even though they suck’ support group. I’ll bring the wine spritzers.

At the movies with S

A few weeks ago I was home on a Friday night doing some hardcore crafting (who has two thumbs and is doing her part to fulfill every stereotype about single women out there? This gal! Just give it another month or so before I splurge on a subscription to Cat Fancy.) I was watching Comcast On Demand (The Newsroom is back, bitches. McKenzie McHale 4 life) when I realized all three of the movies they were promo-ing the hell out of were movies I had seen on dates. And uh, hello, I have a dating blog, so I think it’s high time I dished to you guys about them. Shall we?

Movie Date #1: Moonrise Kingdom

http://content9.flixster.com/movie/11/16/67/11166787_800.jpg

This date was over a year ago, last June to be exact. It was a third date with J, who I’ve mentioned on the blog before (more on him later). We had dinner beforehand and had a really nice time… good conversation, playful banter, flirting etc. It bore more of a resemblance to those dreaded Match.com commercials than any date I’d had before. It was so fun that we totally lost track of time and basically had to run down the street to the theater to make the movie. The tiny theater was full so I grabbed us two seats in the back while J ran to the bathroom.

The previews had started and I was just catching my breath and getting settled when J appeared and asked me to switch sweats. Judging him immediately for being a seating prima donna, I thought, ‘Uggghhhh can this dude just sit down, Jesus’ and audibly sighed, gathering my popcorn, diet coke and purse dramatically. J looked really sheepish as he explained, in the quiet theater, ‘Yeahhh, sorry to be a pain, but I’m actually deaf in my left ear so… I won’t be able to hear you if we sit this way. That’s why I wanted to switch. ‘

Face palm. FACE. PALM.

http://www.theblessedbarrenness.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/facepalm.jpg

So let’s review. I threw my date some serious shade for making a simple request, and it turns out he was making that request to accommodate an actual disability. Liz, if I may call upon your wisdom once again:

liz lemon man

After that special little exchange, the date was (mercifully) uneventful. Fun, but uneventful. We switched seats, got settled, and enjoyed the movie. BONUS, J was able to hear me. It was actually a good date flick… fun, ridiculous, and sweetly romantic. J drove my home afterwards and we kissed in his car.

Date rating: 8/10. Good date, good conversation beforehand, good movie, good makeout session. Only one wildly awkward faux pas by yours truly. 

What happened with J? In case you don’t recall, J happens to be the dude I mentioned a few months ago who after casually dating for most of the summer broke it off with me in a crowded bar. He literally drove into the city during rush hour, found parking, and met me in a popular place for happy hour, just to tell me he didn’t want to see me anymore. Yeesh, that was rough. So actually I don’t know why I was still feeling bad about my theater behavior because it turns out, J deserved to feel a little embarrassment. 

Movie Date #2: This is 40

Extra Large Movie Poster Image for This Is 40

This was a second date back in January. The most comical thing about this outing was the fact that my date, A, was 39, by far the oldest guy I’ve ever gone out with. Naturally, our asses had barely hit our seats before I started a relentless barrage of jokes at A’s expense, featuring me pointing over at him repeating, ‘THIS is forty. This right here, people!” and LOLing obnoxiously to myself. That shtick carried us through the previews and well past the credits rolling at the end. Luckily A was a pretty good sport, all things considered. Incidentally the movie wasn’t great… mama loves me some Rudd and those Apatow nuggets couldn’t have been cuter, but it was essentially a movie about two people struggling with their long term relationship and the misery of middle age. Depressing date fodder, needless to say.

The movie ended, I continued to ham it up with the old age jokes as we walked out, and then we (drumroll please) made out in A’s car in the empty parking lot. Yup, I went out with a 40 year old and then made out with him in his parked vehicle like we were both 17. Or should I say, barely 17…

I’m sorry (I’m not sorry), but Meatloaf just makes everything better. You’re welcome. 

Date rating: 8/10. Despite the meh movie, the date was fun, non-awkward and basically stress free. And a little making out in an empty Loews parking lot on a weeknight never hurt anyone, AMIRITE?

What happened with A? We casually dated on and off for months, but homeboy claimed he didn’t want a serious relationship despite legitimately being over the hill. I honestly didn’t want to seriously date him either; he was a little wild for my taste and seemed to have a serious Peter Pan thing going on. After losing touch with him for a while I did discover (thank you, Internet. Judgers of my stalking can move right along, please) that he is now (another drumroll, por favor) seriously dating someone. And although his real life Mr. Big impression turned out to be bullshit, I honestly do wish him the best. It was fun, A, and I hope you do find true love before you’re old enough to score an AARP card. Because that’s seriously right around the corner.

Movie Date # 3: Admission

http://cdn.mos.totalfilm.com/images/p/paul-rudd-and-tina-fey-star-in-first-trailer-for-admission-watch-now-121217-00-470-75.jpg

This was also a second date with a guy named D who was fun but who I didn’t think I wanted to date seriously. Our shared obsession with Tina Fey prompted him to suggest this movie. It was one of the first things we discussed, probably because my Okcupid profile opens with an over the top anecdote about how my life’s dream is to become the third sidekick to Amy Poehler and Tina Fey’s dynamic duo. My girl crush on Tina knows no bounds, and the fact that she’s from Philly is just icing on the big lesbian cake I’ve baked in her honor.

http://stupidcupidblog.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/21bda-tinafey5.jpg?w=305&h=450

To quote Elizabeth Banks in Pitch Perfect: this girl could turn me.

Now, speaking of Philly, there’s something I need to explain about my city. And I say this with all the love in my heart of a parent talking about their least successful (but secret favorite) kid: Philly is lacking some…seemingly basic amenities that any outsider would ASSUME a major city would have. Such as a normal, large movie theater centrally located anywhere downtown. There are tiny Ritz theaters showing a bevy of independent flicks, and then there’s the dreaded UA Riverview. Please, if you have a moment, enjoy these stellar yelp reviews of the Riverview (or as I’ve heard it referred to, the Riverspew).*

*Disclaimer: Any insane, bigoted rants possibly seen on that yelp page are not the opinion of this blog.

Long story short: I hate the Riverview. It’s dirty, noisy, and someone makes a scene pretty much every time I go. Naturally, it was the site of my date with D. Luckily, the movie wasn’t exactly popular, and we went pretty early on a weeknight, so when we walked into the theater there were only two other people there. Phew, I thought. At least we can watch the movie without any wild disruptions. Or maybe make out if it’s bad? In the back of an empty theater that could be fun.

My date, however, had other ideas. There’s no delicate, PC way to share this fact, so I’m just going to throw it out there as it pertains to my story. For those of you who don’t know me personally (all three of you): I’m white. Painfully white. I mean, I did open this blog post with the phrase ‘hardcore crafting’ and then proceed to embed a Meatloaf music video, so this should not come as a shock to anyone at this juncture. My date, D, is black. So anyway, about a minute into the previews, D turned to me, chuckling sheepishly, and said:

D: I have to warn you about something before the movie starts.

S: Okay?

D: You know how a stereotype can be racist, but also true?

S: …I guess?

D: Well… I kind of talk at the movies. A lot. 

S: You do?

D: I know it’s the biggest cliche in the world, but when this gets going I guarantee I will end up commenting out loud and not even realize I’m doing it. Just let me know if I’m bugging the shit out of you, okay?

S: O…kay.

He said this entire thing in a jokey way, so I honestly had NO clue if he was pulling my leg. Any minute I thought he was going to turn to me and be like HAH! I got you good. Of course I don’t shout at the movies.

What actually happened was the movie started, and not 10 minutes in, D started shouting. Okay, maybe not shouting. But commenting VERY loudly, sometimes to me but sometimes just to the air/universe, about things that were happening in the movie. I was paralyzed, again not sure if I was being Punk’d, trying to figure out if I should laugh, roll my eyes, or tell him to shut the f*ck up. The theater was mostly empty, but this honestly made it even more awkward when the couple five rows in front of us turned around at the noise. Because who is it causing the disturbance? Oh hey just the ONLY OTHER PEOPLE IN THE THEATER. The other thing that made this behavior particularly ridiculous was the genre of movie… we weren’t watching like, an action or a horror movie where surprising or crazy things even happened. We were watching a dull, semi serious romantic comedy about APPLYING TO COLLEGE.

The thing is, D was actually really sweet. Case in point: he told me when we started messaging that he was trying his hand at baking for the first time, and I joked that he owed me cookies after revealing that fact. Well sure enough, he showed up to our first date with homemade cookies. And then at the movies, he smuggled a new, delicious, still warm batch into the theater for us to snack on. I mean, thoughtful, right? So I decided to laugh off this ridiculous turn of events. Actually by the end I was laughing harder at the spectacle my date was making than at the actual movie. I even made some loud commentary of my own towards the end, because ‘When in the Riverview’, right?

Date rating: 7/10. As always, Tina was a vision, but the movie itself was bad (what I could hear of it at least). And my date caused a bit of a scene. However, he also made me LOL more than once and fed me fresh homemade cookies. It was an unexpectedly fun night.

What happened with D?

Funny you should ask (I know, no one asked) but I actually saw D yesterday. We’re not exclusively dating–not even close. I hadn’t seen him in over a month before we met for happy hour last night. And I still don’t think I’ll ever seriously date him; I just don’t feel a crazy connection with him. But he’s a nice, fun, funny dude who lives in my ‘hood and we get along well. I’m dating other people, and I have no doubt that he is, too. But as a painfully single 28 year old, it’s always nice to have that one ace in the hole (that’s what she said) who you can keep around to have fun with without any complications or drama. Unless, of course, disrupting a mediocre romcom counts as drama.

LSD: Reddit sensations

It’s slow times over here in singleland. No new dates, no good prospects. Picture an actual tumbleweed rolling across my okc profile and that’s pretttttyyy much the current state of affairs. So what’s a dating blogger to do when she has no dates? Stalk her blog’s stats page, of course.

Confession: we enjoy looking at our stats the way some people enjoy watching porn. True, you can’t get much more narcissistic than obsessing over how many people are reading a blog that you write about yourself, but it’s just so fun! We can see who is reading in foreign countries. We can see the google search terms people use before they click to our site (these are so completely amazing that they deserve their own post. Stay tuned.) And while this all makes us feel very cool, the actual number of hits we get on a daily basis is, well, let’s call it humble.

Anyway, last week I signed onto the stats page and saw this:

stucu stats reddit

Those are our views per day. Wow, I thought, I know my K posts were riveting, but literally three times the typical number of people visited on those two days. I’m not going to lie, my heart started racing a bit. Did Mindy Kaling tweet about us? Did Tina Fey stumble upon the blog while doing research for a movie about online dating and email a link to all her contacts in Hollywood? Is she about to hire us as screenwriters!?! SHOULD I QUIT MY JOB???

Then I noticed something else:

stucu stats reddit links

Stucu was on Reddit. Here’s what I knew about Reddit up until this point:

  • It’s a sausage fest. Roughly 50% of okc profiles I read mention reddit somewhere in their profile, but I’ve never once heard any girl I know mention it. The only time I’d actually been on the site was when my friend’s husband (Hi Mr. R!) emailed me links to stories. Here is an actual stat that I looked up, because I felt like doing that instead of finishing my work today:                                         reddit stat

That’s from a PBS video that you can check out here if you’re stuck in an airport or a prison cell and you have 8 minutes to kill. Anyway, back to what I knew about Reddit when I made my discovery:

  • The site design/interface is overwhelming. And quite frankly, ugly. Would it kill the good people of Reddit to add a little production value? Maybe a new font or color scheme? A format that doesn’t make me want to blow my brains out?
  • There are approximately 5 fafillion “sub-categories” including, as it turns out, one about OKcupid.
  • The concept is to vote posts up and down, so the more popular posts are at the top of each page. The comments are also notoriously…spirited (translation: nasty).

But the question still remained: how did we end up on Reddit in the first place? I clicked the first link and saw this:

reddit ward

I recognized our promoter as W, a friend of a friend of L’s who has become a loyal reader, even though he’s never actually met any of us. What a great shout out! This was exciting. Stucu was getting a ton of a lot more traffic. Tina Fey would be calling any day now.

Thennnnn I noticed the comments. And while I’m still holding out hope that Tina, her husband Jeff Richmond, and their daughters Alice Zenobia and Penelope Richmond will all love and adore our blog, I’d say the men of Reddit have pretty much made up their minds about us. Please enjoy our favorite comments:

reddit death penalty

Rick Perry, is that you?

reddit still single

Ouch, 26 year old from CT who is “actually a llama”. Also, do you mean my response where I called K a really sweet, thoughtful guy and said I felt bad I wasn’t into him because he was so great? If that’s why I’m single, I might as well slap on a mumu and start adopting cats now, because I’m f-cked.

reddit hating women

Guess I’m doing my part to keep Reddit popular among the embittered male demographic. You’re welcome!

reddit jewess

Hitler, is that you?

reddit like

Oh okay, solitary girl on Reddit. Yes, it’s true we say ‘like’ a lot. D and I were actually cringing over the gchat convos I posted and the number of ‘likes’ that three well educated, grown ass women managed to drop. But honestly, you’re a 28 year old woman mocking strangers on an okcupid subreddit, so… people in glass houses. Also, it’s hardly surprising to be dissed by a bunch of hostile dudes behind their computer screens for deigning to (very nicely) reject a guy, but I guess gender solidarity means nothing to you. What’s that, Leslie Knope?

ovaries before brovaries

Preach.

Last but not least, my favorite comment:

reddit got

K, is that you?

PS– Special thank you to W for pimping us out on Reddit and also for defending us against the haters! (I didn’t share that part, but he did. So nice). Even if we enraged a few mouth breathers, as Amanda Bynes would probably say, there’s no such thing as bad press. 

Pre-date rituals

Confession: the original idea for this post was not my own. It came from a post on an awesome blog, Brunch for Every Meal, that LSD are now kind of obsessed with. Go check it out when you have a sec, just promise to come back even if you think Dara is funnier than me (spoiler alert: she is). After reading her hilarious recap of getting ready to go out, I was inspired to pull back the curtain and share my own pre-date rituals with you faithful readers. Here’s what typically goes down before a first date:

Morning of date, 10 am:  Hold a strategy meeting on gchat re: my upcoming date with 4-6 of my closest girlfriends. Review all possible scenarios and outcomes. Rate level of excitement from 1 (considering faking a bird flu outbreak) to 10 (actively naming our future children). Look at date’s profile one more time to ensure I remember his general story/deal, and also to increase the likelihood that I actually recognize him. This is an uphill battle, though, since we know from first hand experience that dates often show up with completely different identities.

11:00 am: Confirm with date via text that we’re still on. If either of us is going to bail, this is the last socially acceptable moment to do it.

3:05 pm: Read some online news to make sure I’m up on current events and ready for intelligent adult conversation.

6:15 pm: Arrive home from work. My apartment is three blocks from my office so I usually have time to change and primp a bit. And by change and primp, I mean eat pop chips and commence drinking.

6:30 pm: Put on some chill but upbeat jams, pour myself a glass of vino, munch on a snack, plug in my straightening iron and let the transformation begin*:

*Lazily re-straighten the front third of my hair and put on mascara. Not everyone has a Paolo.

6:45 pm: Pretend to consider my outfit options when in reality I 100% have a (boring) first date uniform: dark jeans, black top, dangly earrings, flats.

7:10 pm: Psych myself up. Seriously. Give myself a pep talk in the mirror, compliment myself on looking cute and being hilarious/charming, glug that last bit of Pinot Grigio, grab my purse and strut out the door. This routine sounds fairly cool, calm and collected, particularly the strut, but in reality it’s a bit closer to this:

7:15 pm: Phone a friend or my mom en route. Tell them I’m going on my date and if they don’t hear from me later tonight, to call Detectives Stabler and Benson and have them get right on my case.

7:25 pm Attempt to time my arrival perfectly. I’m actually usually early but in this case I try to be five minutes late, because I would much rather make an entrance than sit alone at a table/bar awkwardly looking up every time someone walks in. I’d like to think I’m pretty breezy about the whole dating thing, but those few minutes when I’m waiting for a date to arrive always manage to unglue me. Every single time I 100% think I’m being stood up and that everyone in the bar will know/pity me (I’d like you all to know I just spent 15 minutes searching youtube for the Sex and the City episode where Samantha gets stood up and is so upset she kisses a bus boy. Clearly I was unsuccessful.) Annnywayyy, avoiding a traumatic scene like that sometimes means walking super slowly and loitering on street corners like a lady of the night, but it’s a small price to pay for my sanity.

7:35 pm Outside the bar. My date’s (hopefully) in there. He might be my future husband. He might be in a mime costume. He might have a grenade in his pocket. Literally anything is possible. Take a deep breath. This could be great or awful, but it will probably be somewhere in between. All I can do is cross my fingers, pray I don’t do this, and hope for some blog material.

The weeknight only policy

When I first started online dating I instituted a scheduling rule called the weeknight only policy. The rule states that I never schedule a first or second date on a weekend, for the following reasons:

  • Weekends are short, and they’re precious. I want to save them for my friends, family, and people I’ve actually confirmed that I enjoy being around.
  • It’s an easier out if the date is bad. I can say (honestly) that I have to work early, I’m tired from a long day, etc. etc. It’s also easier to schedule just drinks on a weeknight.
  • It’s less of a disappointment if it doesn’t go well. If a guy cancels, the date is awkward, or something comically awful happens, at least I didn’t potentially miss something better to be there. On a Tuesday night, for instance, I would have most likely been on my couch watching New Girl, not out to dinner or drinks with my friends. So that definitely softens the blow. Which brings me to the inspiration for this post…

I broke my own rule. I said yes to a Saturday night date. A second date, so slightly less egregious than a first, but it’s definitely early enough in the game that I still don’t know how I feel about the guy. When he asked, I hesitated, but I honestly didn’t have plans at that point so I said yes. He made reservations at a BYO I’ve been wanting to try, I planned my outfit in my head and bought some vino for dinner (I know, I’m classy as hell). And then, hours before said date:

okc cancel text

Okay. Intellectually I know this isn’t the end of the world. It’s flu season. People get sick. Shit happens. Dates have canceled on me before. To be fair, I’ve also canceled before (but only once same day and I promise I had an actual reason). He was appropriately apologetic. We chatted for a bit about potential dates to reschedule. I’m fairly confident that this is legit and that it wasn’t just an excuse for him to ditch me, but I also know that that’s a possibility. Ahem, because it’s totally happened to me before. 

stay classy men of okcupid

Still, I can’t help but feel like a complete and utter loser. Everyone was busy by the time I tried to make alternate plans. Obviously staying home on a Saturday night is far from a tragedy; to be totally honest I stay home on weekend nights fairly often (wow this post is making me look cooler by the minute) but online dating can be such a self esteem crusher to begin with, and I just stoically endured an entire day of girls smugly blowing up Facebook with instagrammed shots of 1-800-flowers arrangements. Frankly this pushed my reality a little too close to the opening scene from Bridget Jones’s Diary for comfort. The worst part is, if this had happened on a Wednesday night I would’ve been thrilled at the prospect of putting on my pjs and watching Nashville instead of muddling through awkward conversation. Which is EXACTLY why the weeknight only policy was put in place to begin with! As a fail safe against shit like this. Damn it, me. Damn it.

So now I’m sitting on my couch watching Workaholics, blogging, eating cheese, and drinking the Pinot Noir that was meant for dinner. Happy Saturday night, guys!